Adventist University of Health Sciences (ADU) recently hosted a week-long Summer Science Camp for middle school students from Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida. The goal of the event was to inspire these young adults to pursue academic success and break the cycle of poverty.
“We both have similar missions,” explained David Greenlaw, D.Min, President of ADU. “We both want to provide opportunities for students to realize their full potential, and this partnership allowed the members of Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida to get an inside look at what an education in health sciences can do for their future.”
ADU specifically designed the Summer Science Camp activities to get the students excited about higher education while showing them that science can be fun. From creating hand lotion and paintings to exercising and working in a garden, they got the chance to experience first-hand what science is really all about.
“It is so crucial to impress upon young people that learning is not only fundamental, but it can be fun too,” said Kendra Van Houten, Director of Community Engagement at ADU.
With that in mind, ADU’s Science Camp not only incorporated hands-on learning experiments, it also taught the students ways to live a happier, healthier life with tips they can share with their loved ones and utilize for the rest of their lives.
“This has been an incredible partnership and has allowed us to involve our students in something life-changing,” stated Tasha Robinson-Banks, Senior Service Director for Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida. “Every day was exciting, every day was engaging, and it was clear that our kids left feeling inspired to achieve their academic dreams.”
The group was given access to ADU’s state-of-the art simulation center, Florida Hospital’s Nicholson Center where they witnessed how robots are being used to save lives, and toured the Orlando Science Center. ADU students also volunteered their time to teach the children program specific lessons.
“We wanted to provide the children of Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida with the opportunity to learn about health sciences and STEM subjects that they may have not otherwise received, and I believe we achieved that,” stated Keaira Kittrell, ADU’s AmeriCorps VISTA, who was tasked with organizing the event. “To see them having fun while learning and tell me that they don’t want to leave, was the best feeling.”